RI Health Care Reform Bill Clears Senate Hurdle

May 24, 2013

A comprehensive health care reform bill is headed for a full vote in the Rhode Island Senate. The bill aims, in part, to increase the transparency of health care costs.

Rhode Island's state capitol
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

The Rhode Island Health Care Reform Act of 2013 passed out of the Senate Committee on Health and Human services Thursday night. Committee chair Senator Josh Miller introduced the bill that would require hospitals to report more detailed financial information and disclose serious incidents. It would empower a state health care planning council to do a top-to-bottom review of what’s driving health care costs in Rhode Island as well as to come up with what it calls a “unified health plan” for the state.

An earlier version of the bill would have authorized a consumer hotline for information from health insurers on the estimated cost of services and procedures, but that provision has been nixed. The bill would also set up a special primary care practice (called a "patient-centered medical home") for state employees with chronic health conditions.